April 24, 2001 - Columbine Killers - Taking the blame game to absurdly new heights, the families of several victims in the Columbine massacre have filed a lawsuit against several video games companies and sex-oriented Web sites. The suit seeks $5 billion in punitive damages from 25 entertainment companies, including Nintendo, Sega, Sony, Time Warner, ID Software and GT Interactive Software. The suit is partly based on the fact that the murderous youngsters named one of their sawed-off shotguns after a character in "Doom." The lawsuit also claims Klebold and Harris looked at sexually violent material on at least two Internet sites. A nearly identical lawsuit filed in 1997 after Michael Carneal killed three Heath High School students in Paducah, Kentucky, was dismissed last April after a federal judge said video games are not subject to product liability laws.
April 22, 2001 - Timothy McVeigh - With thousands expected to travel to Terre Haute, Indiana, to participate in the Timothy McVeigh execution media circus, local entrepreneurs are hoping to cash in with T-shirt sales. The T-shirts available range from the commemorative, "Hoosier Hospitality/McVeigh/Terre Haute/May 16, 2001, Final Justice" with a picture of a syringe, to the pro-death-penalty, "Terre Haute Extra Hangin' Times, Die!, Die, Die!" and the anti-death-penalty "Stop the Killing, Let McVeigh Live" with an image of Mcveigh strapped to a gurney.
April 22, 2001 - Body Found in Suitcase - A body stuffed inside a suitcase was found in a north Miami-Dade canal by a group of boys rowing their boat. Officers at the scene said they could not identify the gender or ethnicity of the victim, although they believed it to be a female. They believe, though, it could be the body might be that of Rebeca Peña, 26, of Miramar, an aspiring actress who was reported missing five days ago. This is the fourth body found in suitcases in the past 10 months along roadsides in Dade and Broward County.
April 18, 2001 - Timothy McVeigh - A web firm wants to show a live webcast of the McVeigh execution on a pay-per-view basis. Saying that people have a First Amendment right to watch, lawyers for Entertainment Network Inc. argued in court that they should be allowed send a cameraman to the executiuon chamber or to webcast the feed from the closed-circuit video that will be relayed to victims' families in Oklahoma City. ENI is know for the the web site VoyeurDorm.com in which, for a fee, viewers could watch the daily activities of female college students via 55 Webcams in their home. Derek Newman, the attorney for ENI, said they would charge viewers $1.95 for watching and the money would be donated to charities established for the 168 people killed in the bombing.
April 17, 2001 - Brendan Spencer - The original high-school rampager, Brenda Spencer, was denied parole after telling the three-member parole board at the California Institution for Women that she feels responsible for the many school shootings since her 1979 sniper attack. "I know saying I'm sorry doesn't make it all right," she said, adding that she wished it had never happened. But she added, "With every school shooting, I feel I'm partially responsible. What if they got their idea from what I did?"
April 17, 2001 - Timothy McVeigh - In a letter to PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), Timothy McVeigh said the although he sympathises with their cause, he will not request that his last meal be vegetarian. PETA first wrote to the Warden of the prison in Terre Haute asking that McVeigh's last meal have no meat because "Mr. McVeigh should not be allowed to take even one more life." When the Warden refused, PETA wrote directly to McVeigh. McVeigh, enjoying his last moments on planet Earth, sent PETA a page-and-a-half, hand written letter, discussing his feelings on vegetarianism.
April 14, 2001 - Albert DeSalvo - Arguing that the Boston Strangler case is still an open homicide investigation, the state and Hub police have again refused to share DNA evidence with families of Albert DeSalvo and the alleged killer's last victim. Attorneys rejected a settlement offer in a federal lawsuit filed by the relatives of Mary Sullivan and DeSalvo asking the state to hand over two of six semen samples collected from the Beacon Hill crime scene in 1964. "It's crazy. We should be working in conjunction to find her killer," said Sullivan relative and local TV producer Casey Sherman.
April 14, 2001 - Marc V. Sappington - A man in Kansas City was charged with three counts of first-degree murder in a case that investigators said involved "deviant cannibalistic tendencies." Marc V. Sappington, 21, was charged with killing three men since April 7. He was being held on $2 million bond. Kansas City, Police Lt. Vince Davenport, commander of the homicide division, said evidence indicated cannibalism was the motivation. Police also said Sappington had a fascination with Jeffrey Dahmer.
April 14, 2001 - Luther "Luke" V. Casteel - The man accused of shooting 18 people in a crowded bar outside Chicago was an ex-con obsessed with guns and the movie "Natural Born Killers" who shaved his head and donned fatigues before the attack. Police said 42-year-old Luther "Luke" V. Casteel was asked to leave JB's Pub for hassling a female patron and returned a little more than an hour later carrying two handguns, two shotguns and 200 rounds of live ammunition. Once he started shooting witnesses said he laughed and screamed: "I'm the king, how do you like me now?" Two people were killed and 16 others wounded by gunfire. The victims were bartender Jeff Weides, 38, and patron Richard Bartlett, 48, both of Elgin, a blue-collar neighborhood about 35 miles west of Chicago. Casteel was described by acquaintances as a divorced construction worker. Police said he had served 13 years in prison on a 1978 armed robbery conviction.
April 14, 2001 - Jack the Ripper - Two amateur investigators believe an army Colonel from Cheltenham was Jack the Ripper. The pair of researchers are convinced that Colonel Claude Reignier Conder, from Tivoli, was the notorious murderer who killed five prostitutes in 1888 in London. Many famous Victorians were linked with the case, including writer Lewis Carroll and Queen Victoria's grandson Prince Albert Victor, but crime writer Tom Slemen and criminologist Keith Andrews revealed that they have uncovered new evidence which proves Conder was the killer.
April 13, 2001 - Possible Serial Killer in Swaziland - The dead bodies of 24 murdered women and children have been uncovered in a forest near Swaziland's traditional capital, Lobamba. Other accounts put the total of victims at 33. Initial investigations have revealed that the victims were killed over a period of several months up to a couple of years. Police Commissioner Edgar Hillary of the tiny mountain kingdom of Swaziland described the murders as a "national disaster".
April 12, 2001 - Four Dead in Chula Vista - An elderly man who was being evicted from an apartment complex for senior citizens in Chula Vista, California, shot and killed three people there before killing himself. Officers found the bodies of a woman and a man inside the building's lobby. Two other bodies were found on the upper floors. Eugene Molter, 68, was found dead with a gun in his hand and an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound. The other victims were identified as resident Ariel Ibarra, 72, and complex managers Patricia Carignan, 60, and her husband Albert Carignan, 65.
Assistant manager Shiloh Haines told the newspaper that Ibera had filed several complaints against Molter. Ibarra's daughter-in-law said Ibarra had several clashes with Molter, who lived in the apartment below him. Police Lt. Gary Wedge said Molter's pending eviction may have prompted the shooting spree.
April 12, 2001 - Robert Lee Yates - Pierce County prosecutors say Robert L. Yates Jr.'s previous convictions in the Spokane serial killings will shed light for jurors on the two murders he's charged with in this county. Defense attorneys, though, have promised to try to keep details of Yates' 13 murder convictions secret in order not to prejudice the jury against him. Pierce County Superior Court Judge John McCarthy is expected to hear arguments on the issue later this month.
April 5, 2001 - Guatemala's Jack the Ripper - The serial killer in Guatemala City has strangled three prostitutes over the last three months usings plastic sheeting. He has also been scrawling angry, moralistic messages on the backs of his victims with a blood-red marker. Dubbed Jack the Ripper, police believe he may have previously killed prostituts in El Salvador and even Los Angeles.
April 5, 2001 - Guy Georges - A Paris court convicted serial killer Guy Georges to life in prison. Georges, who admitted to the killings during the trial, will not be eligible for parole for 22 years. The verdict upheld the penalty state prosecutors had requested. Before the verdict was delivered, Georges turned to the victims' families and asked the court not to impose a life sentence. "I am nearly 40 years old and I will never get out." Following his confession last week, Georges, who was known as the "Beast of the Bastille," asked for forgiveness from the victims' families.
April 5, 2001 - Rory Conde - Miami's "Tamiami Strangler" who was sentenced to death for killing a prostitute pleaded guilty to the murder of five others as part of a plea agreement. Rory Conde agreed to the plea agreement and was sentenced by Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Jerald Bagley to five consecutive life terms without parole.
April 3, 2001 - Arthur Shawcross - New York Governor George Pataki ordered that violent criminals be banned from showing and selling their art at an annual exhibition by inmates. The order was prompted by this year's show including 10 paintings and sketches (including one of Princess Diana) by infamous cannibal killer Arthur Shawcross.
March 28, 2001 - "Original Night Stalker" - A serial killer believed to be responsible for as many as 10 unsolved murders in Orange, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties from 1979 to 1986 apparently got his start a few years earlier as the notorious "East Area rapist" of Northern California. New DNA evidence linked the murderer--dubbed the "Original Nightstalker" by local detectives--to at least 44 rapes committed from Sacramento to San Ramon during a three-year period in the 1970s. "Unfortunately it's still a faceless person," said Jim Amormino, a spokesman for the Orange County Sheriff's Department. "Now more and more information is going to come out. There is lots of work to do--the most exciting news would be to match this up to a suspect and bring him to justice, and I believe this brings us closer to doing that."
March 21, 2001 - Gregory Clepper - In a plea agreement Gregory Clepper, who once bragged about being Chicago's most prolific serial killer, was sentenced to 80 years in prison for one murder. Prosecutors dropped 12 murder charges against him in exchange for admitting to killing Patricia Scott. Scott, 30, had been sexually assaulted, strangled and stuffed into a garbage can in April 1996.
In the 12 cases that were dropped, new evidence either excluded Clepper as a suspect or pointed to other suspects. Assistant State's Attorney William O'Brien said Clepper remains a suspect in 15 other murders for which he hasn't been charged. DNA samples from those murders are being examined. According to prosecutors, the plea agreement would allow them to file new charges against Clepper in the 12 cases that were dropped if DNA tests implicates him.
March 19, 2001 - Jin Ruchao - Chinese police arrested a suspect blamed in a series of bombings that killed 108 people in northern China. The suspect, Jin Ruchao, was already on the run for allegedly murdering a woman in the nation's south. Authorities in the city of Shijiazhuang posted a $6,000 reward for clues leading to the capture of Ruchao.
The China Daily reported that Ruchao lived in the five-story dormitory where one of the four explosions killed most of the 108 victims. It also described him as deaf. The report said Jin, 40, was evading police since March 6, when he allegedly killed a woman, identified as Wei Zhihua, in the southern province of Yunnan. The four blasts struck within an hour of each other, damaging four workers' dormitories, killing 108 people and injuring 38 others.
The explosion at the No. 3 Cotton Mill dormitory was so strong it flattened the building, which was home to 48 families, and blew out windows in the mill's other dormitories nearby.
March 19, 2001 - Guy Georges - Alleged French serial killer Guy Georges went on trial in Paris for the rape murders of seven young women. Georges, 38, was known as the Beast of the Bastille, for terrorizing young women around the trendy Bastille neighborhood in Paris. He was arrested March 1988 following one of the largest manhunts ever carried out by French police. Seven young women were discovered murdered with their throats slit in Paris' eastern neighborhoods between 1991 and 1997. The attacker apparently got to know his victims and talked his way into their apartments before killing them. DNA tests linked Georges to four killings, and he confessed to three others, according to prosecutors.
March 17, 2001 - Uganda Death Cult - A year after the fiery mass murder-suicide of at least 330 members of the Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments of God, police are still searching for the alleged cult leaders. In true Cult's R' Us fashion, the leaders of the church decided on March 17 to make judgment day a reality and, according to police, herded 330 people, mostly women and children, into the makeshift mud-and-wattle temple, sprinkled combustible material, nailed the doors and windows shut and torched it. In the following weeks, police followed the grisly trail to several houses owned or rented by presumed cult leaders, where they found 448 more bodies buried in the gardens and stashed under concrete floors.
March 15, 2001 - John E. Armstrong - Former Navy sailor and confessed serial killer John E. Armstrong was found guilty of first-degree murder for the strangling death Wendy Jordan. This was the first of what could be six murder trials of Detroit-area prostitutes. Armstrong, 27, showed no emotion as the verdict was read. He will be sentenced April 3 to life in prison without parole.
March 14, 2001 - Kristen Gilbert - Killer nurse Kristen Gilbert was convicted of murdering four patients in a Northampton VA hospital in what prosecutors said was an attempt to impress her security guard boyfriend. Though Massachusetts banned capital punishment in 1984, Gilbert, 33, could still get the death penalty because the murders ocurred in a federal building. The jury reached its verdict after 12 days of deliberations.
March 14, 2001 - Timothy McVeigh - Lawyers for Timothy McVeigh have asked a federal judge to approve the Tim's request that his body not be autopsied after his execution. The lawyers submitted request on the grounds that McVeigh has religious, ethical and philosophical objections to an autopsy.
March 13, 2001 - Andy Williams - - Authorities in San Diego, California say that school rampager Charles "Andy" Williams saved one bullet for himself but was unable to use it due to quick action by law enforcement. Fifteen-year-old Charles "Andy" Williams told detectives he carefully counted bullets, but planned to shoot randomly, but at the end would commit suicide.
The scrawny teen also allegedly said made up his mind about the attack three days before the rampage. Williams told detectives he was disappointed and angry at Santana High, in part because he was disciplined for repeated tardiness. He added that he wasn't shooting at anyone in particular. Williams is being held in juvenile custody after being charged as an adult under Proposition 21 with murder, attempted murder and assault with a firearm.
The boy also allegedly said he told his friend Joshua Stevens of his plan. Stevens has said he did not report anything because he thought Williams was joking. Stevens is one of four students forced to transfer from Santana High.
March 12, 2001 - Henry Lee Lucas - The Texas Department of Criminal Justice announced the death of serial confessor Henry Lee Lucas. Henry was pronounced dead aqt 11:16 p.m. in the Huntsville Prison's infirmary after his heart stopped. Lucas was a chain smoker and had a history of heart disease. He had recently complained of breathing difficulties and spent two nights in the prison hospital, said Larry Todd, a prison system spokesman. Officials said he will be buried in the inmate cemetary if no family members claim his body. He was 64.
March 10, 2001 - Vincent Johnson - Known as the Williamsburg Strangler, Vincent Johnson, pleaded guilty to strangling five women and will serve life in prison without parole. Johnson's 10-month killing spree began in August, 1999. The 31-year-old homeless crack addict admitted to the murders a week before prosecutors were to decide on whether or not to seek the death penalty.
March 9, 2001 - Michael Hilderbrand Sr. - A man from Greer, South Carolina, suspected of killing his estranged wife, her daughter and their son and then trying to destroy the couple's antique shop killed himself after police spotted him and chased him through Virginia. Michael Hilderbrand Sr., 43, apparently committed suicide when authorities caught up with him in Virginia. He had been the subject of a nationwide search after police found documents in the family's home indicating he might flee to Mexico. Police had signed arrest warrants charging Hilderbrand with three counts of murder in the deaths of his wife, Sandra, 36; his stepdaughter, Caitlin Williams, 8; and his son, Michael Jr., 5.
The three were found dead in their beds. Sandra Hilderbrand had been shot several times in the face and head and each child was shot once in the head, Greenville County Coroner Parks Evans said. Police believe the three were shot after a judge ordered Hilderbrand to stay away from the family's home and have no contact with family members. In court filings, Sandra Hilderbrand said she was afraid of her 6-foot-4, 300-pound husband, who she said had bipolar disorder.
March 8, 2001 - Explosive Intermittent Disorder - Following the school shooting in San Diego, a wave of alleged school-related threats have swept the nation resulting in the arrest of numerous student.
March 5, 2001 - Andy Williams - A 15-year-old high school freshman opened fire at his school in Santee, Southern California, killing two other students and wounding 13 other people. One victim, Brian Zuchor, 14, was found dead at the school. Randy Gordon, 15, died at nearby Grossmont Hospital. Eleven more students and two adults wounded. The teenager, identified as Andy Williams, allegedly told friends that he wanted to "pull a Columbine" on Santana High. Sadly, no one took him seriously.
March 5, 2001 - Wes Shermantine - Convicted killer Wes Shermantine said that if his two young sons recieve $20,000 in reward money, he'll reveal the location of the bodies of four victims, two for which he was convicted, and two more. Although Shermantine has been convicted for four murders police believe he may be responsible for up to 22 more slayings. Authorites have offered to drop the death penalty for two bodies, but Shermantine asked for cash instead. The victims' families, who very much want Shermantine sentenced to death, said they were willing to consider the death penalty deal but were against paying for the bodies. They'd also like to help other families locate their missing loved ones. Shermantine, they said, has offered to reveal the locations of several bodies he hasn't been charged with killing.
March 1, 2001 - Kevin Artz - A Jackson man was been charged with murdering his wife, then cutting her up and cooking her. After 12 years of marriage Kevin Artz said he looked at his wife Patricia and saw the devil staring back. In July of 1999Artz allegedly struck his wife with a metal pipe, dismembered her body and cooked it for two days at their family restaurant. Police arrested Artz while he was putting a box that contained the severed head of his wife on a nearby porch. Several weeks prior to the alleged murder Artz underwent brain surgery to remove a large blood clot.
January-February, 2001 - Morgue Archives - Previous entries to the Morgue Archives.